T Nation

Authors like Rand


Does anyone know of any fiction books that are similar to Rands work?

Similar in the sense that the characters do everything with superlative ability and are so perfect that they simply cannot be real... Similar in the sense that it expounds an explosive love for life and drive to excel. Characters that are stoic and beautiful.

I'm looking for something in line with the above; the philosophical/political aspect doesn't have to necessarily be there.




Video not working....

Orion - I though you would be a fan of Rands...?

Am I wrong?



"Explosive love for life and drive to excel" ? Tigger comes to mind.

"Superlative ability and are so perfect that they simply cannot be real." Poohs honey detection and aquiring skills are unmatched and he is not discouraged by setbacks.


Maybe some of the great works of Robert A. Heinlein.


Also I'd think Sinclair Lewis does a good job with his book Arrowsmith about a young man becoming a doctor and how hard he works to get there.


There is a Jubal Harshaw in every book he has ever written, excepting Magic, Inc. Maybe. Definitely fits the bill.


Nards has a great suggestion with Heinlein.

Maybe it's related to being a comic fan, but I always responded more to "perfected" fictional characters more so than fallible anti-heroes. (OK, nerdy, perpetual loser Peter Parker/Spider-Man is an exception to the rule.)

It's not exactly "literature," but I used to enjoy Doc Savage books. He was a character who had perfected himself physically and mentally for the sole purpose of righting wrongs.


Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. I'm serious. Actually anything non-fictional by Hunter S. Thompson fits the bill really. He actually uses this line to describe Dr. Gonzo, but it fits perfectly for him: Too weird to live, too strange to die.

Also, Underground by Don DeLillo

I Am Charlotte Simmons by Tom Wolfe (this book is pure, unadulterated bullshit in my opinion, but Simmons is definitely a character with all of the qualities you mentioned)

Where Men Win Glory: The Odyssey of Pat Tillman by Jon Krakauer. If you want to know what a hero is, read this book. If you think you already know what a hero is, read this book.


Colleen McCullough writes alot like Ayn Rand. Check out the Masters of Rome Series. Traces time from Gauis Marius to Augustus.


I have read Fear and Loathing. Nothing else though.


Then I would recommend The Curse of Lono and The Great Shark Hunt. Hell's Angels fits the bill, except for the drive to excel part. I guess if your drive to excel means being a badass biker gang then it has that too. If you want to see a bunch of characters who are the total opposite of what you're looking for I highly suggest Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail: '72.


This is a fantasy series: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sword_of_Truth

It's an excellent series, whether you glean the Rand influences or not; but by the time you get to Faith of the Fallen (the sixth book), it's evident that the author shares the philosophical bent of Ayn Rand but has woven it into a fantasy setting as opposed to the contemporary vision of The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged.

Even the "rules" that appear in the books from time to time, referred to as Wizard Rules, seem related to Rand's views in some ways. For instance:

"The most important rule there is, the Wizard's Sixth Rule: the only sovereign you can allow to rule you is reason. The first law of reason is this: what exists, exists, what is, is and from this irreducible bedrock principle, all knowledge is built. It is the foundation from which life is embraced.

Thinking is a choice. Wishes and whims are not facts nor are they a means to discover them. Reason is our only way of grasping reality; it is our basic tool of survival. We are free to evade the effort of thinking, to reject reason, but we are not free to avoid the penalty of the abyss that we refuse to see. Faith and feelings are the darkness to reasons light. In rejecting reason, refusing to think, one embraces death."


Its already been said, but I immediately thought about Jubal Harshaw's character in "Stranger". I started reading Fountainhead but just didn't enjoy it enough to finish it. Maybe I should give it another try, its been a while


Has anyone mentioned Sinclair Lewis yet? It Can't Happen Here reads like a Rand novel, or rather, Rand reads like Lewis.


Wow. I'm sure I have read a something EXACTLY like that in either the Fountainhead or Atlas Shrugged.



Yeah, I mentioned Arrowsmith. That's a good one.

I was also thinking that Ken Follett's Pillars of the Earth has some strong characters, especially the mason that feels it's his life's purpose to build a cathedral.


Oh, that is 100% Rand. I knew there was some reason I liked that bad show! (Other than the hot baybees of course..)

If I ever read fiction again, I'll have to check that out.

OP: if you like Rand's fiction, but haven't read her non-fiction, I recommend it. Intro to Objectivist Epistemology is short and sweet.


Pillars of the Earth ix probably in my top twenty. Yes BEFORE it was an Oprah book LOL.
my dad also loved it.


Ugh..was it an Oprah book? I feel dirty now.

Did you get his newest, Fall of Giants?
I just started this morning and it's very good so far. His characters are so easy to get interested in. Follett could write about a guy going shopping for socks and I wouldn't be able to put it down.